Ever since corporate America replaced parliamentary democracy with a French-backed corporate oligarchic republican system, US businesses have been able to buy politicans using their campaign donation promises. But now it seems that the tech companies are blowing their budgets making sure that the politicans do what they are told.
As congressmen consider regulating organisations from Facebook to Google, and mull antitrust crackdowns against Amazon, the corporations have responded by flinging more cash at the problem. The money is spent on, ahem, holding meetings between company execs and politicians so that businesses can push their agendas and swing decisions in their favour, which may not be in the interests of the people who elected them.
Facebook spent $2.85 million for the third quarter of the year after spending $3.21 million in the first quarter. In its second quarter, it spendt $2.38 million. In 2016 it spent $8.7 million. The social network is being investigated by both halves of Congress for its role in the Russian propaganda campaign during the US presidential election, ironically which involved spending a lot less money getting Donald Trump elected. Most of the cash has been spent on a huge PR campaign in the capital.
Amazon spent its highest ever amount on professional lobbyists - both individuals and companies that book face time with lawmakers and their staff where they press the company's viewpoints. Amazon spent $3.41 million in the third quarter, up from $3.21 million for the second quarter - which was also a record spend for the company. The fruity cargo cult Apple has already spent more than the record $4.67 million it spent in 2016. So far in 2017, Jobs' Mob has spent $5.46 million. bending lawmakers' ears. Google spent less in the third quarter of the year to the wallet-busting Q2 spend of $5.93 million, but it still spent $4.17 million - higher than its average spend of $4.0 million per quarter over the past five years. But perhaps the most notable increase in spending has come from Oracle, which spent a whopping $3.82 million on lobbying in the third quarter: double what it normally spends.
Google spent less in the third quarter of the year than its second quarter spend of $5.93 million, but it still spent $4.17 million - higher than its average spend of $4.0 million per quarter over the past five years. Oracle spent $3.82 million on lobbying in the third quarter. That's double what it normally spends.